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as a pdf, click here. - Peek-A
peek
aboo
edition July - September 2013
free of charge, not for sale
quarterly published music magazine
music
magazine
KARL
BARTOS
TEST DEPT:REDUX
THE NEON JUDGEMENT
ORDO ROSARIUS EQUILIBRIO
LEBANON HANOVER + EVI VINE
IMPLANT + CRUISE [CTRL] + SURGYN
CHELSEA WOLFE + CHRISTIAN WOLZ
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10
WOOL-E-TIPS
WOOL-E-TOP 10
Various - Circuit D’Actes
Volume 3 LP
Best Selling Releases
(April/May/June 2013)
(La Forme Lente LFL 8)
1. THE KLINIK
Eat Your Heart Out (CD/LP)
2. IN DEATH IT ENDS
Occult Machine (LP+CD)
3. SHE PAST AWAY
Belirdi Gece (MLP)
4. KAS PRODUCT
Try Out (LP/CD)
5. SUICIDE COMMANDO
When Evil Speaks (CD)
6. VARIOUS ARTISTS
Circuit D’Actes 3 (LP)
7. KAS PRODUCT
By Pass (LP/CD)
8. PROJECT PITCHFORK
Black (CD)
9. BLACKIE
Morgen Über Uns (LP)
10. COSMIC HULA RADIATORS
Cosmic Hula Radiators (MLP)
The third installation of the Circuit
D’Actes series from the BelgianFrench label La Forme Lente. In keeping with the spirit of its acclaimed (and
now sold out) predecessors, this new
release offers a focus on modern acts
(2 tracks each) as well as an overview
of all things synth-based.
From Position Parallèle (Geoffroy D
of Dernière Volonté) and Kline Coma
Xero’s dark romanticism to the selfdescribed “No future pop” of Illustration
Sonore (feat. members of Dolina, Âme
de Boue, Jeunesse Fantôme and Froe
Char) and Új Látásmód Fúzió /PostFestum’s minimalistic soundscapes or
Shiny Black Mater’s (former Le Syndicat Electronique) take on 19th century
nursery rhyme, every track is striking
evidence of the creative forces within
the synth wave scene.
The Wool-E Shop - Emiel Lossystraat 17 - 9040 Ghent - Belgium
VAT BE 0642.425.654 - [email protected] - 32(0)476.81.87.64
www.peek-a-boo-magazine.be
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peek
aboo
contents
music
magazine
04 CD reviews
20 Interview EVI VINE
06 Interview THE NEON JUDGEMENT
22 CD reviews
08 Interview IMPLANT
24 Interview CHRISTIAN WOLZ
10 Interview TEST DEPT:REDUX
26 Interview SURGYN
12 Interview LEBANON HANOVER
28 Interview CHELSEA WOLFE
14 CD reviews
30 CD reviews
16 Interview CRUISE [CTRL]
32 Interview ORDO ROSARIUS EQUILIBRIO
18 Interview KARL BARTOS
34 Calendar
peek
aboo
colophon
music
magazine
ORGANISATION
MAGAZINE
WRITERS (continued)
Dimitri CAUVEREN
Ward DE PRINS
Peter DOLPHEN
Wool-E Shop
Peter MASTBOOMS
TRANSLATORS / EDITORS
Dries HAESELDONCKX
Pieter COUSSEMENT
Alise JAMESON
Bunkerleute
Philippe BLACKMARQUIS
Karen LALEEUWE
Tom PLOVIE
Philippe BLACKMARQUIS
Ward DE PRINS
Frédéric COTTON
Le Fantastique
BODYBEATS Productions
www.bodybeats.be
PHOTOGRAPHERS
Pieter COUSSEMENT
PARTNERS
WRITERS
Bart GYURKOVICS
Chris KONINGS
Dark Entries team
www.darkentries.be
Didier BECU
Gothville team
Didier PIETERS
www.gothville.com
Benny SERNEELS
Filip VAN MUYLEM
Marquis(pi)X
Henk VEREECKEN
WEBSITE
Seb LEESON
Jurgen VANVLASSELAER
Ward DE PRINS
Peek-A-Boo Magazine • Citadellaan 70, bus 2 • BE-9000 Ghent • [email protected] & [email protected]
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www.peek-a-boo-magazine.be
EDITORS - The Weight Of Your Love (CD)
(Pias)
This is one of the few albums I would have bought even if I hadn’t had the chance
to review it, so for sure I was a happy man. I am a real fan: I bought all the other
albums! I love all their faces: the eclectic electro, acoustic and roaring guitars and
now this new dimension with strings...To cut a long story short: for me, this is the
best Editors’ album up to now! ‘A Ton of Love’ (first single) is already a classic song.
Most of the other songs are softer, with strings, choirs, more acoustic. Don’t expect
the same thing as on the other albums, this is an evolution: you will hate it or love
it... For me, this album is pure gold, worth buying! I can’t wait to see them on stage!
I’m already getting goosebumps! [FvM]
IMPLANT - The Productive Citizen (CD)
(Alfa Matrix)
Is it ‘God has an Implant’ or is Implant God? The New Implant CD is just so divine!
Already the 9th album by a living legend & yes i can say: this is the best so far!
There are - once again - great collaborations: guest vocals from LEAETHER STRIP,
XMH & KRYSTAL SYSTEM! From the first song ‘Lord Knows I Tried (Album Version)’,
I’m sold; loving the vocals (Claus from Leatherstrip in duo with Len Lemeire) and
the well-worked-out sound. It’s clear that the sound has - once again - evolved into
the right direction. Claus’s vocals remind me a bit of J-L (Front 242 and that’s not
the only time on this album). Another marvelous song is ‘C.C.C.P.C.C.T.V.’. It screams:
BOOK me on stage and fast! Implant is here to stay, for sure! [FvM]
AUTODAFEH - Blackout Scenario (CD)
(Scanner)
Starting in 2007, Autodafeh are part of the old school EBM revival. So you can expect
some heavy boot stompin’ and sweatin’ bodies when you hear any of Autodafeh’s
songs. They take ingredients from Front 242 and Nitzer Ebb, complete with analog
sounds. But they also show us a new side with the synthpop dreamsong “The Pain
That We Feel”. An inconsistent album though, as songs like “Claustrophobia, Bloody
Mary and The Shadow” have far fetched lyrics that annoy quickly. There are enough
highlights, I love the Nitzer Ebb sound on “Step Up” and “Lessons To Learn”.If you like
EBM, good beats and catchy melodies with straightforward lyrics, this is the stuff for
you. My favorite remains “Hunt For Glory” though... [CK]
RADICAL G - Wasp EP (DOWNLOAD)
(Dancedelic D)
This is an EP in the purest sense. Four tracks, one original version and three remixes.
The “original mix” is a nearly eight-minute electro/techno track that seems to have
no ending but is driven by a catchy bass line. First remix is the work of Al Ferox. He
turns the ‘Wasp’ song into a darker and harder track, injected with some annoying
wasps buzz and added vocals... Super fat track! Ryogo Yamamori, THE Japanese
electro/techno revelation of this moment, models it into a sexy downtempo electro
/ techno track. George Lanham closes this ‘Wasp’ EP in the hardcore techno way. This
is a killer track! In a straightforward techno set, I would spin this mix, for all other
occasions I would put the Al Ferox version on. [BG]
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THE NEON JUDGEMENT
With a gig at the Brussels Summer Festival and a cover
album in the pipeline, we thought it was a good idea to
have a little talk with one of the most influential Belgian
bands of all time, THE NEON JUDGEMENT. We grabbed
Dirk Da Davo by the shirt and this is what he had to say.
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Welcome Dirk. The album, We Never Said You’re
No Good (Live Sessions 1984) was just released in
December. What are the reactions so far?
Well, we both like the recordings very much. The
sound is very satisfying. The recordings were originally
made in 1984. It was Dirk Ivens who showed up with
these recordings and made the request to release the
recordings on vinyl. I guess all the songs on the album
had the reactions when they were originally released
on CD or vinyl at that time. Nostalgic power stuff for the
nostalgics amongst our fans!
This last one I really hate. I believe that in a democracy
people should have the freedom of choice to go to a
loud concert or not. You can make rules and regulations
much more constructive, for instance, inform people
beforehand that a band plays loud. Then you can put ear
gear for free at the entrance of the venue. But forcing an
artist to play at a certain dB level, it’s like limiting the
artistic freedom and his voice. It’s almost the return of a
new kind of fascism. I know what my performance needs.
Politicians should not tell me. Everything has became
so artificial nowadays...
Are there more Live Sessions lying in THE NEON
JUDGEMENT vault? Live recordings from the Horny As
Hell or the Blood And Thunder tour, for instance?
There are still live recordings, I believe. But we don’t
make a job out of listening to them again and again.
They are ‘filed’ somewhere and ready to be discovered
at the right time.
A NEON JUDGEMENT gig is always a fun trip through
nostalgia-land. And of course people wanna hear
Chinese Black, Tomorrow In The Papers or Miss Brown.
But I think it would be fun to make a setlist with lesser
known, but yet great, NEON JUDGEMENT tracks such
as Alaska Highway, Games Of love, Here She Comes,
I’m Half, Baby’s On Fire, Facing Pictures and yes, why
not Are You Real? Or would that annoy the audience,
you think?
We are THE NEON JUDGEMENT and our audience has
an expectation of the track list when they come to
our concert. When you have released such a quantity
of albums as we have, it is hard to choose.Of course
it would be interesting to play such an alternative set
live. But it might also disappoint a few. So we do our
best to reach everyone. By playing Voodoo Nipplefield,
The Machine and Schizofrenic Freddy live during our
Docuvision tour in 2010, I think we fulfilled some of
those needs. We didn’t perform these songs live for
many years.
And you’re already working on a new album, an album
full of covers to be exact. You already made several
covers in the past (Who Do You Love? (Bo Diddley),
Wandrin’ Star (Lee Marvin), This Strange Effect (Dave
Berry) to name but a few). Will they be on the album
as well, or will it be new covers? And which covers will
there be or is that a surprise?
We are working on a cover song project, yes. Most of the
recordings will be new. I think we will only choose 2 old
cover tracks for the project, and maybe a few new THE
NEON JUDGEMENT tracks also. But there’s still a long
way to go to finalize this project. We might pencil in a
release date, 2004 would be the earliest. But the track
list we will keep a secret. We are not in a hurry and we
don’t want to tell too much too soon ;-)
Are there NEON JUDGEMENT tracks that you would
have loved to play live, but for some reason didn’t
work?
No, not really that I can think about at this moment.
The latest album Smack is, in the meantime, already
4 years old. Are there any plans for a completely new
NEON JUDGEMENT album?
Not really, no. We are working on the project that I
explained here above. A mix of things; new & old.
You have performed all around the world, probably at
the weirdest places. What was the weirdest of all and
why?
I’m afraid we did so many concerts (in weird places) that
this is hard to tell :-) Arnoz, the punk cafe in Leuven
where we played our first live concerts was a weird
place! And we had permission to perform loud AND
weird music there!
The last couple of years you’ve been performing live
regularly again. Is it more fun than in the 80’s?
I’m sorry, but for at least the last 14 years we’ve played
concerts very regularly. 1999 is the only year since the
beginning of our career that we didn’t do any concert. It
was the year that I started my label Dancedelic D. In 30
years, everything has changed a lot. The 80’s were more
fun. There are too many rules and regulations in concert
venues now. You shall NOT smoke! You shall NOT
drink! And the worst: you shall NOT play loud music!
Thank you for your answers Dirk and all the best with
all your projects !
Jurgen Vanvlasselaer
photo © Marquis(pi)X
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IMPLANT
IMPLANT has a new CD out, along with a new video.
So, it was time to get back to mastermind Len Lemeire,
whom I caught in between his more than 1.000
activities …
First of all, from where did the idea for the perfect
productive citizen come from?
The productive citizen can be seen as a concept: a
representation of the standards we are forced to live
up to in society. The system became very focused on
productivity over the last decade. We live in strange
economic times, where people can make money by
investing against a currency. Where people have to
invest their savings to help banks overcome wrong
investments. We have to keep increasing the output.
We should all be productive citizens, keep the system
turning, no questions asked. But I ask you, should we
produce more e-mails or more positive emotions?
You have put a lot of effort in the lyrics, why this urge?
It’s also nice to know that you learned something
about it from J-L from the Crash32 project …
Indeed, some of the lyrics are way more worked out
then what I am used to doing for Implant. On a lot of
the previous albums, I worked around repetitive vocals.
I tried to set a mood by repeating blunt statements.
This time we spent a lot of time trying to tell little
stories in each song. We really worked on a chorus /
refrain structure. And I think we really have something
to say this time.
The cool thing about Implant is the new people
popping in. How did you manage to get them in for the
new album?
This is where I should say it is all a master plan. But it
never is. I was stuck when writing, lord knows I tried,
but I couldn’t find the lyrics nor did the pace of the
song work for me. I did have the ‘down, down, down …’.
I was listening to Leaether Strip when I realized that
Claus might be perfect for that track. So I asked Claus.
Claus is one of those people that really became a friend
after various backstage talks. And what he came up with
was so good! With Bonnie, I wanted to do something
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about Chernobyl and if possible in French (don’t ask me
why, I just had this wild idea). So we asked Bonnie to try
something on a track. When we got the vocals back, we
loved it so much that we deleted the track and started
writing a new song around the vocals. The original
was a rock track, now it’s dance. Isa was a very natural
thing to do. Both tracks were finished, but needed a
female vocalist. I’m currently working on the new XMH
production. So Isa was kind of the first girl that came to
the studio when we needed a girl.
‘C.C.C.P.C.C.T.V.’ is one of the songs that I definitely want
to know more about, especially the deeper meaning of
the title. Can you also tell something about the work
on the video, how did that happen and with whom did
you work on it?
C.C.C.P.: Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
C.C.T.V.: Closed-circuit television
It’s a little story on paranoia, about a guy who can’t
escape Russian security cameras. For the video we
used a 12 screen slip screen of real cctv footage. It is a
subliminal message. The idea is that you have to watch
the video 12 times to see it all. After 12 times, the song
should be stuck in your head, and you will go buy the
album. Keep in mind, this is the first video I ever did
myself, and we are planning to do a few more. For a first
video, I think it’s not that bad.
What do you think of ‘The City’ being compared to Fad
Gadget? Was it on purpose? I really loved that song,
somehow it sounds so sexy and groovy …
‘The city’ will be the next single. We started working
on a video for this one. I think I know what you mean
by comparing this to Fad Gadget. It must be this wavysynth that holds the refrain that makes you think of the
good old 80’s. It’s nice you hear Fad Gadget in this one,
always been a big fan. Was it on purpose? Not sure, we
did want to go for that 80’s feeling, but we never said
”hey, let’s try and sound like Fad Gadget”.
Filip VAN MUYLEM
photo © Marquis(pi)X
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TEST DEPT:REDUX
Hello, can you introduce Test Dept. to young new wave/
industrial fans, some of whom weren’t even born in the
good old eighties?
Test Dept was born out of the crumbling industrial
wastelands of the South East London docklands area
in the early 1980’s. Utilising scrap metal and other
objects taken from abandoned factories and scrapyards
as instruments and merging these with electronic sound
generation and visual representation we began to create
a vibrant, energetic and passionate rhythmic based music
informed by and reflecting the societal breakdown we
saw happening around us. This became more politically
charged with the onset of the Falklands War and the
1984 miner’s strike. Always looking to experiment
and develop in new ways, Test Dept developed the
Ministry of Power as a vehicle to create varied largerscale performances and collaborations with artists,
organisations and individuals from the artistic, political
and social spheres.
For Test Dept politics were very important. To what
degree can we state that ideology/politics were as
important (or more important?) than the music itself?
At certain points in people’s lives, events occur that
politicise them and when these happen there is usually
no turning back. Such occurrences are the seeds of
revolutionary change and so you pick up the baton and
run with it as far as you can. The political climate in the
80s created a polarised situation which forced us to
react against what was happening in our communities
and also on a global scale. What began then continues
today and is ever more visible with a mass media, which
cuts both ways. We are now seeing a repeat of these
patterns with people being pushed downwards and
the ever-widening gap between the top and bottom of
society.
My favorite song title of all time was this one from
“A Good Night Out”: “Long Live British Democracy
Which Flourishes And Is Constantly Perfected Under
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The Immaculate Guidance Of The Great, Honourable,
Generous And Correct Margaret Hilda Thatcher. She Is
The Blue Sky In The Hearts Of All Nations. Our People
Pay Homage And Bow In Deep Respect And Gratitude
To Her. The Milk Of Human Kindness.” Sarcasm and
irony was part of the game, wasn’t it?
Whilst always approaching material with a serious
agenda, irony and humour were never far from the
surface, evident in song titles such as the one mentioned.
This could also be seen in some of our sound and sample
choices, voice and speech cut-ups and occasionally in
the visual images projected as a backdrop to the live
shows. It was, however, often overlooked or missed by
commentators at the time.
Can you tell the story of the album “Shoulder To
Shoulder” with the South Wales Striking Miners Choir
and also tell a little bit about the social struggle?
We performed a benefit for the Miners during the strike
and were instrumental in bringing performers together
to create the SWSMC we performed together and made
the recordings to raise funds for the strikers who were on
strike for a year and suffered great hardship as well as
police brutality and victimisation. 30 years later there is
a push to publish the truth and expose what went on in
that time with the head of police operations at the time
already being investigated for the police’s cover up in
the Hillsborough disaster. Watch this space. The in-depth
detail of these times will be published in the TD book
‘Total State Machine’.
Where did you find your musical influences?
Krautrock?
Musical influences were varied and different for each
individual member of the original group. Certainly the
energy and anti-establishment elements of Punk; the
sonic experimentation of Dub Reggae; the electronic
and noise experiments of late 70s outfits like Throbbing
Gristle, Cabaret Voltaire and the late 70s/Early 80s
electronica of bands such as Sprung Aus Den Wolken;
As an outsider, I can see some parallels between old
Test Dept in the UK and old Einstürzende Neubauten
in Germany, e.g., the use of scrap metal. Was this
coincidence? Did you know these guys?
We developed our own aesthetic independently as a
rhythmic based group without rock trappings. We were
aware of EN and first met them in Berlin at Blixas club
Risico. We later shared the same record label and FM
Einheit worked with us on the track Cold Witness for our
first album Beating the Retreat.
Youth with members of Throbbing Gristle/Psychic TV,
Coil, Current 93, Nurse With Wound etc. What was the
relation of Test Dept towards these guys? Did you
know them? Were they friends? Was there some sort
of industrial scene or was it more splintered with Test
Dept doing their own thing independent from the rest?
We knew PTV from our time with Some Bizarre label and
whilst respecting their transgressive work with the likes
of William Burroughs and Brian Gyson we were never
that close. Genesis P did produce a track Sweet Sedation
on BTR which we have recently put through the sonic
mixer. We were more overtly political and had our own
agenda. With the Temple ov Psychick Youth, we were very
wary of any kind of ideological grouping, be it political
parties, cults or whatever. There was an industrial scene
of sorts, but it was somewhat fractured, and sometimes
tended towards the competitive and egotistical.
In the UK there was some sort of club or society
around Genesis P. Orridge and his Temple ov Psychick
A last message?
Earplugs will not be provided!
the live energy and genre mashing of The Pop Group
and the rhythmic explorations of A Certain Ratio. Zev
too was an influence. We were also influenced by various
indigenous and classical musics. These are just a few. Our
location and surroundings also influenced our sound,
beyond the obvious metal bashing element.
Henk VEREECKEN
live photo © Marquis(pi)X
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LEBANON
HANOVER
Lebanon Hanover is one of the most promising bands
on the minimal wave scene. They have developed
a cult following thanks to their gloomy cold-wave
music, reminiscent of Siouxsie, Cure, Bauhaus or Xmal
Deutschland. The band is composed of a couple: Larissa
Iceglass, originally from Switzerland, on vocals, guitars
and synths and William Maybelline, from England, on
vocals, bass and synths. They take their dark girl/boy
vocals, razor sharp guitars and brooding bass-lines to
create some sort of synthetic apocalyptic pop. Larissa
and William agreed to a short interview backstage
after their show at the REWIND Fest 2013 in Ghent.
Let’s start with the name of your band: where does it
come from?
L: It’s a place in Vermont, in North America and it’s
very aesthetic. It doesn’t sound English, or German,
or anything. We didn’t want to have a name like “The
Something”, or “Die Something” in German, so we took
this, because it sounds like no other name.
But looking back, it makes sense, because a lot of songs
are a mix between English and German...
L: Exactly, and between the two of us, I spoke English
with him and he started to speak German, so it was a
kind of fusion.
You told me that the first time you did some music
together, it was like an explosion. Can you tell more?
L: We both had solo projects and when we met, we
composed 4 or 5 songs for the first album in just one
week. We had this strong energy and connection. I came
to visit him in England, near Newcastle. It was a little
shocking because it’s such an uncultivated and lifeless
place. I didn’t want to leave the house anymore. We just
recorded songs and did nothing else.
Which song was the first one you recorded?
L: “Die World”, and then “Einhorn” and “Totally Tot”, they
were all made in two or three days. We also made the
video of “Tot” that same week. We always do our own
videos so we can choose the images and the art concept.
Anyone can do videos like that.
W: It’s DIY... And I think this sort of videos can live a lot.
They can have a lot of life, in comparison with Hollywood
videos, which are so clean and precise.
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L: Feelings are more important than production. That’s
why I like the music from the 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s.
There is so much warmth in it. From 80 onward, it’s no
longer interesting for me: it’s too many high-pitched
frequencies, hard to bear. My ears are used to old music,
so I can’t really listen to new music now.
And do you compose together or on your own?
W: It’s a mix. One of us prepares a riff, for instance. Then
the next one works on the riff and suggests something...
L: For every song, the process is different. Most of the
time, William will work on the bass. For me, the main
part is the vocal part. The guitar is more of a side thing.
I write a lot of texts, I write what I think and then I sing
about what I think. The most important thing in our band
is to express our philosophies about this world right now.
We are in a world that is very fast and unsafe. I find it
interesting to see how my point of view is different from
other people’s. We live in a completely different way from
everyone else. We have no jobs, which gives us a lot of
time to think and to write.
The real luxury is not money, it’s time..
L: Yeah, I think time is really beautiful especially when
you use it for beautiful things and don’t waste it on just
anything, like working in a steel factory. Like someone I
met tonight, it really hurt me: he had a lot of wounds on
his fingers just because he has to work everyday. I don’t
think it’s what we actually need. A lot of humans don’t
need to work so much. They all think that they need to be
busy, to be stressed, when in fact they could take the time
to stop and enjoy life, read a book, etc.
Now you are living in Germany, in Bochum, I think? Are
there more opportunities there for you?
W: Musically, there are a lot of activities. It’s better
because people are more reserved. In England, people
would want to bite at us just for being the way we are.
When we were walking in the street dressed in black,
people used to take their children away from us.
What are your plans for the coming months? You have
the new single, “Gallow Dance”, what comes after that?
W: We are working on the new album, which will be out
in September on Fabrika Records.
Philippe BLACKMARQUIS
photos © Seb Leeson
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THE EDEN HOUSE - Half Life (CD)
(Jungle Records)
The first album by this gothic-prog rock band led by Tony Pettitt (bassist, ex-The
Fields of the Nephilim) and Stephen Carey (guitars, ex-Adoration), dates from 2009.
Here again, The Eden House brings their unique blend of prog-metal, trip-hop
and psychedelia, plus ethereal vocal melodies sung by very talented guest female
singers: Monica Richards (Faith And The Muse), Lee Douglas (Anathema), Jordan
Reyne (Dr. Kevorkian & The Suicide Machine), Laura Bennett, Queenie Louise Moy
and Mrs Pettitt in person! As a whole, this is a great album. The sound is huge, clear,
powerful and epic. Of course, I can’t help missing some people here, like Julianne
Regan, Amandine Ferrari and Evi Vine. But if you like All About Eve, Fields Of The
Nephilim, The Mission or The Gathering, you should rush and buy this album! [PB]
DEPECHE MODE - Delta Machine (CD)
(Calembour Records)
“Delta” refers to the blues aspect (the Mississippi Delta) and “Machine” to the synthetic
side. Released nearly four years after “Sounds Of The Universe”, this 13th album is very
good, very direct, organic, and pop-oriented. It revives “Violator” and “Songs Of Faith
And Devotion”: you find this mixture of dark blues, lyrics about sex, religion and love
is supported by very edgy analog arrangements and catchy melodies. Martin Gore’s
compositions are brilliant, but what is most striking is that Dave Gahan has managed
to compose truly archetypal DM hits: “Secret To The End”, “Broken” and especially “You
Should Be Higher”, with its very sensual rhythm, reminiscent of “Closer” by NIN. “Soothe
My Soul” is an obvious club killer and the bluesy “Goodbye” sounds very sixties! No
doubt, Depeche Mode is still “à la Mode”... [PB]
KARL BARTOS - Off The Record (CD)
(Bureau B)
The opening song “Atomium” (named after the monument in Brussels) couldn’t have
been stronger. Due to the vocoders, you immediately think of Kraftwerk. But, so what?
This is without any doubt the song that could have been on “The Man Machine”
or in other words: a perfect (forgotten) classic. There are also lots of other tracks
which sound reminiscent of Kraftwerk, even very weird pieces of music! International
Velvet is sublime, but can be best described as the result of what happens when you
put James Last in a spacelab. Yeah, that strange! But there’s more as you can also
find some 80’s-gems on this record that have a bit of a Neue Deutsche Welle-touch.
Perfect examples are “Nachtfahrt” or “Without A Trace Of Emotion”. Off The Record
offers nothing new, and you hear from the very first second that this is a Kraftwerkproduct. In the case of Bartos, this only works as an advantage. Essential release. [DB]
CHRISTIAN WOLZ - Wolz (CD)
(Citoma)
Vocal Artist Christian Wolz celebrates his 25th anniversary as an artist in 2013 with a
‘best-of’ album. Although, it’s not scrictly a Best Of, since Wolz chose to self-evaluate
his back catalog to create new, contemporary songs. After a fairly quiet intro, Isobella
is the first that grabs me by the throat with his slow lament against an intoxicating
soundwall, reminding me of the movie Eyes Wide Shut. Shouting, screaming and
demonic vocals form the backbone for Voxanium I, where the multiple, surrounding
vocals overwhelm you, created by alternately singing in multiple microphones. The
outro, similar to the intro, breathes serenity and tranquility. But once again, Mr. Wolz’s
twisted mind prevails and after a silent period some final screams, curses, sizzling,
gasping and fantastic vocals create a stunning climax to this album. [WDP]
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CRUISE [CTRL]
CRUISE [CTRL], the Belgian duo formed by John and
Gore, will play in Brussels on 21st September. Their
first two albums were at the frontier between techno/
trance and minimal wave: 120 beats per minutes and
exclusively analog instruments. With their third album,
“...Are Not What They Seem”, they evolved towards a
drone, industrial oriented electronica, while keeping
the same minimalistic approach.
Is the title “…Are Not What They Seem” a reference to
Twin Peaks?
J: Yes! “Owls Are Not What They Seem” is a phrase that
often repeated in Twin Peaks. It is supposed to be a key
to the riddle, but in fact it isn’t at all. We liked the idea
of ​​saying “We may not be where you expect us to be...”
G: And there’s an evolution in our sound. It was a nod to
both Lynch and to our creative process.
How would you describe the evolution of your sound?
G: We wanted a change in the rhythms. Now they are
more structured, less techno-linear and the sounds are
more radical, less smooth than previously.
J: Another difference lies in the mode of composition, in
the editing process. For the first two albums, the sound
was central. Gore created a sound and everything else,
the rhythms, revolved around the sound. In the new
album, we changed the rule and we started with the
rhythms.
How do you manage to reproduce your music on stage?
J: The base is the rhythm, but a large part of the
compositions relies on improvisation, so it is important
for both of us to be well synchronized.
G: It’s a bit like in jazz: I go to the background so that
John can move forward, allowing me to search for an
interesting idea or sound on the headphone, which I will
then bring to the foreground 40 seconds later. There is
a permanent risk taking and each concert is different.
Your music is instrumental, but some songs are sung.
How did it come about?
G: We met Jean-Luc De Meyer (Front 242) and he said he
wanted to sing on a track. What he submitted to us was
different from what he did with Front and the lyrics were
also very nice, so we finalized the track and it became
“Man On The Planet”.
And what about the collaboration with Dirk Ivens on
the last album?
G: We thought it would be good to work with Dirk as
he is also one of the ‘Belgian legends’, with quite a
different style and he is also an accessible and modest
man. The connection with Dive seems quite logical to
us. We share the same claustrophobic, suffocating and
hypnotic aspects. But these cooperations don’t mean we
are an EBM band. EBM, for me, is music like Front 242;
it is very specific.
Your music style is more like ambient techno, or trance,
in my opinion.
J: Yes. We feel like Dirk Ivens, who said that his music
would fit perfectly at “I Love Techno”. Unfortunately,
we don’t get such proposals. In fact, we have a wide
potential audience, but we only seem to touch the
intersection of all these scenes.
G: We are sitting on several chairs. We are stamped
“EBM”, “Dark”, but for that scene, we’re too soft. For the
techno scene, we are too quiet and for ambient, we are
too nervous. We are at the crossroads between EBM,
darkwave, techno and ambient and this diversity reflects
our musical tastes. I often listen to Suicide for the
moment. Pan Sonic, of course, but also Actress, Bytone,
everything that is on Raster-Noton.
J: I listen to a lot of the early electronic music, e.g., Michel
Henry or neo-classical music like Debussy, Philip Glass.
As for modern electronic music, I listen to bands like
Emptyset...
What kind of show and setlist can one expect at your
concert in Brussels in September?
J: As usual, we will present a mix between dry beats and
noise textures, tracks from our three albums and, who
knows, new tracks and happenings...
Are you recording new songs? Planning a new release?
G: Yes, we will be recording new tracks for our fourth
album this summer.
J: The first drafts are clearly more abstract, cutting from
usual pop and EBM structures but with the same dry
textures... In the perspective of “...Are Not What They
Seem”.
G: An album every two years, since 2008... So, you can
expect a new album in 2014...
Philippe BLACKMARQUIS
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KARL BARTOS
Karl Bartos will perform at the Brussels Summer
Festival, a perfect opportunity to have a nice chat with
this great gentleman.
Can you tell us why we had to wait 10 years before you
came up with ‘Off The Record’ the first new full album
after ‘Communication’? What else have you been doing
besides composing music?
Karl Bartos: In 2004 I co-founded the master program
“Sound Studies – Acoustic Communication” at the Berlin
University of the Arts where I was a visiting professor
teaching Auditory Media Design until 2009. That took all
my energy and time.
In the past, you worked together with artists like Johnny
Marr (The Smiths), Lothar Manteuffel (Rheingold),
Emil Schult (Ex-Kraftwerk), Andy McCluskey (OMD),
Bernard Sumner (Joy Division/New order) and Anthony
Rother … On ‘Off The Record’, only one track ‘Musica Ex
Machina’ bears the credits of Marr and Sumner next to
yours… Are you fed up with working with other ‘ego’s’
or do you just prefer working alone again?
I always prefer to work with other human beings. It’s
hard, though, to find somebody – not everybody – nextdoor or even in the same town. Sending data on the
Internet won’t do. You have to be together in one room
to write music with substance. Virtual space can’t give
you that kind of intimacy. You need to explore music
together in the real world.
How did you come to write a song about the Atomium
in Brussels, a left over monument from EXPO 58?
The Atomium represents one of the most emblematic
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buildings in the world. It represented unbridled belief in
technological progress in the post-war era, with atomic
energy as a beacon of hope. We know better than that
now. The Fukushima reactor disaster confirmed once
and for all that renewable energy forms alone can
secure progress and our future. Nevertheless, for me,
the Atomium – this gigantic model of an iron crystal –
remains a symbolic edifice with a breath-taking effect
on the observer.
In ‘Without a Trace Of Emotion’ you sing ‘I wish I could
remix my life to another beat’ … Does this mean you
would do things differently with what you know now?
And what would be the main changes?
Of course, it’s just an old dream to foresee the future.
The whole album is about time: music is the articulation
of time; without time there wouldn’t be music and our
lifetime just goes in one direction. But…. if we only could,
what would we change? That’s the main question.
A bit further in the same song, you sing ‘Dresscode: red
shirt, black tie – Your History’… I immediately picture
that legendary album cover … or are you referring to
something else?
KB: In the film I’ve done for that track, Herr Karl plays the
lead role. Using my alter ego allowed me to quote all the
clichés: the dress code of red shirt and black tie, golden
records, cover stories, mirror glass, recording studio,
persecution complex... You know: After all these years
people see me in this shirt and with the black tie. That’s
not the worst thing in the world, but I feel ambivalent
concerning this. However, I had so much fun writing and
sketching this screenplay. It was worth it for that alone.
Wolfgang Flür, a former Kraftwerk colleague of yours
who also left the band in the 90’s, wrote a book ‘I Was
A Robot’ with some stunning (tour) stories … Are you
not keen to write such a book about your experience
in music business?
Yes, in fact I am no focusing on writing my autobiography.
The subtitle will be “Soundbiography”. It’s very strange,
for instance, to go trough my calendars from 1969…
Your new album ‘Off The Record’ was released on CD
but also on vinyl, even more the single ‘Atomium’ was
released only as a 7” vinyl… Was it the label’s choice
and do you have a preference yourself?
No, I don’t have those preferences...
You have experienced a lot of changes in the music
industry. Do you think there is still a future in music
and, if so, can you give some advice for the newbies
who still want to try their luck?
If you want to work in the field of music, you just find
out what instrument you like best and you learn that
– no matter what it is. Get lessons and work on your
technique every day. Get a good knowledge about music
in general. Try to find friends with the same passion for
music and form a band with real instruments and play
and learn together about the history of music – classical,
pop, all genres. Find an audience and perform. If you
are still interested after some years you can go on…
You should talk to some professional musicians at the
university, opera, in symphony orchestras, etc. and find
out about your opportunities. Find a mentor. The rule:
talk to the professionals and don’t let somebody else tell
you what you should do. One thing is very clear: if I was
young nowadays, I would go into the film production.
And what about the future? Will we have to wait
another 10 years for a new Karl Bartos Album?
I will write my soundbiography – that’s going to be
my next project. I don’t know about music production,
though. Maybe I can’t afford to produce another record.
You know there are so many free downloads sites on
the net, right after you release a record. I don’t see
any money in it. How shall I finance my next work? I
don’t know yet. But I will always play and perform on
stage, because I really believe that we should all come
together and celebrate in sound.
Peter MASTBOOMS
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EVI
VINE
Evi Vine is a unique artist. She has one of the most
beautiful voices I’ve ever heard. It reminds me of
Kate Bush, Chelsea Wolfe, Lisa Gerrard and Moya
Brennan (from Clannad). Her haunting compositions
sound as if a female Leonard Cohen is whispering
stories of loneliness and loss right into your ear. She
played at the Rock Classic in Brussels in May and will
be supporting The Eden House at the Café Bizarre in
Dentergem on 21 September. We spoke with her and
her partner in crime, Steven Hill.
E: I like the word “cooperate”. We’d love to have a
relationship with somebody that can be mutually
productive and respectful. When that comes along we
will be happy to be “cooperative“. We’ve met a couple
of people, someone in Germany, someone in the UK,
we’ll see how it goes. But first of all, we need to know
what kind of record we want to make. If we end up being
alone, we have good friends supporting us.
Evi, you are about to release your second album. How
is it going?
E: We are very happy because we are recording with
Phil Brown, the producer who worked with Talk Talk,
Portishead, etc.
S: We had been fans for two years of the Talk Talk album
that he worked on. He’s got a particular style..
Will the new album be a little bit less ambient, a little
bit more rhythmic, more trip-hop?
E: Maybe, but the ambient will be on the top of this.
We’re sort of crossing over right now.
S: There’re the albums that we love, like the first Tricky,
Portishead and Massive Attack. If you listen, there are
percussions, layers of drums that you don’t notice...
E:... until you really notice. The song can feel naked
and unfinished but it’s not: there’s a lot of great things
happening, textures... The other thing is that writing the
first album involved isolation, but it was personal... And
the stories were painful, but this time, we started from
scratch, everything is brand new and we keep an open
door. If you want to play and you have some time, just
send us stuff. People in Australia and from all kinds of
places sent us stuff...
S: Now we have a really good circle of musicians and
engineers and people that can help, so it feels like a
much more productive space than the first one did. It’s
just easier when it’s not just us at home going mental.
(laughs)
Are you going to cooperate with labels for distribution
and marketing?
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How do you work together, how do you compose?
S: It can vary: it can be that Evi comes up with a song,
like the whole thing, or a melody, or a riff...
E: Everything has changed now. The evolution is cool. On
the new album, Steven has a piece he started on piano,
then I wrote things with the computer, then we added
guitars...
S: It’s quite experimental. It’s like you trip over something
and it makes a good sound, then you loop it. It can be
absolutely anything. It’s not limited to instruments. It’s
like hit anything, play anything, record anything, play
things upside down, it’s really free, it’s a creative process.
And the release is planned for September?
E: Hopefully, if we can... We’ll say in autumn...
I remember waiting for a long time for the first album...
I had even put it in my list of the 10 best albums of the
year and it wasn’t released yet...
E: Thank you, such a good man! (laughs) I’ve waited
10 years! (laughs) This one has taken like a year, really,
and we are already moving forward onto the next one,
album 3, because we have so many songs and it feels so
exciting with the new guys. This means we can make it
happen quickly and keep it really good.
S: The first album was a labor of love, it took a long time
and it was pretty hardcore. We probably needed a break
from it. Now we’re just writing songs and coming up with
new material and new sounds all the time. So, it’s not as
if we’re gonna make the 2nd album and then go... to the
Bahamas for 2 years, we’re just gonna carry on.
E: By the way, we didn’t go to the Bahamas for 2 years, if
we do, we will call you. (laughs)
Philippe BLACKMARQUIS
photo © Marquis(pi)X
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COVENANT -Last Dance (CD)
(Dependent)
This EP is an important chapter in the history of Sweden’s finest as this is the
band’s 1st offering after Daniel Myer left the band. This teaser for Covenant’s new
album, which will be released in September 2013, features 6 tracks, 3 of which are
only available on this limited edition digipack (3000 copies in total). “Last Dance”
is typical Covenant. There is the typical baritone voice from Eskil and of course
a melody that will haunt you once you’ve heard it. The other 3 tracks are totally
different and miles away from their latest album. The songs are a bit minimal with
a Kraftwerk-touch. It’s not enough to say it’s a blast, but from Covenant I only expect
the best, good is just not enough! [DB]
PSY’AVIAH - Future Past (EP) (CD)
(Alfa Matrix)
Psy’Aviah is a band I really love... Their album “Introspection/Extrospection” was
one of the best Belgian releases in 2011, thanks to a unique crossover between
intelligent pop, dark electro and dance rhythms like reggae, hip-hop or even dubstep.
Here, they go on with their experiments and focus on the slow-beat, introspective,
ambient style with beautiful, moody songs, combined with subtle dubstep elements.
Emélie’s lingering voice hovers beautifully on Yves’ amazing arrangements. “Our
Common Future” features Kyoko Baertsoen, former Hooverphonic artist & cofounder of Lunascape. Besides 5 new songs, Psy’Aviah added remixes by young and
fresh artists, plus a “Stripped” version of “Circles”. It’s like a soft dream, an electronic
journey into nostalgia. Again, a true success! [PB]
ASCETIC - Self Initiation (CD)
(Golden Antenna Records)
With members of post rock band Heirs, these guys nudge towards new wave and
indie rock. Noisy indie rock that is, not that sensitive crap made by a bunch of
tossers who care more about their image than their music... The album only has nine
songs but each one is capable of giving you the chills. They must’ve listened to a
lot of 80’s and 90’s bands like Swans, Stone Roses, Birthday Party, Joy Division etc...
copycats? No, they still manage to punch their own sound through. “I Burn” has great
guitars and sounds a bit like O Children or even Siglo XX if you remember them... In
“Trankasham” the singer sounds as evil and angry as Michael Gira, and in “Uroburos”
the vocals remind me of Nick Cave. Anyway, nothing but praise for this album! [CK]
MRDTC - #2 [We transfer] (CD)
(Emmo.biz)
The voice, the sound: old school EBM at its best. But after a second and third listen,
I discovered that MRDTC was more than just one of those EBM-bands. Great build
up, nice arrangements, good mixing and vocals with an attitude. With this being
their debut release (after the Liar-EP from 2012 ), it creates high expectations for
the future. And a future is what I see for this promising band, another shining star
at the music firmament. Focus-track “Liar” has been picked up already and is sure to
be a hit on international dancefloors. For those who like more layered tracks, check
out Discretion or (Aynosis) which has a twist of electroclash in it. MRD and TC have
made one of the debut-albums of the year for sure. [PD]
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Christian WOLZ
Christian Wolz is a German vocalist, performance artist and composer. In 2013, he will celebrate the 25th
anniversary of his musical career and will release a new album, his 15th album. Peek-a-boo had an exclusive
interview with this unique avant-garde artist.
2013 is a special year for you: How did you start the
year and form the plans of doing something special?
Oh, this year started normally, like every other year.
Last year I had the idea of doing something special
for my anniversary. First I wanted to cancel my plans
due to difficulties of financing the idea, but friends
persuaded me to do it. So, I produced a new album with
almost all the styles, ideas and ways of working I
had over all those years. To enhance the anniversary
celebration, I planned a special performance, which is
scheduled for October when the new album will be
released.
What’s your feeling about the 25-year period in which
you’ve released 14 albums? You’ve done a lot of
collaborations with other artists, solo performances
and you’ve searched for a way of sharing and teaching
vocal art to others.
Sometimes I don’t realize how long I’ve been working
in this field. When I look back and see what I’ve
produced on my own and together in my collaborations
with various artists and musicians, I’m proud of that.
It gives me a good feeling to know this energy still
exists. Teaching is a special thing. It gives me a lot of
experience in different ways. To share that expertise
and see how my work influences that of professionals,
non-professionals, beginners and young people is nice.
As an artist who worked for so long you’ve experienced
various evolutions in the music industry and your
personal work. Let’s start with your voice. How has it
evolved after working with it so intensely for such a
long period?
The human voice is a very sensitive and intimate
instrument. I started to use this instrument 25 years
ago. I don’t think about what I need nor how to use it.
This was good because it came very naturally. It gave
me a good base to develop my work. I have always
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trusted my own voice through all these years. That trust
was important to find new elements, techniques and
styles. Of course, there were a lot of different periods
in my life which gave me new impulses to develop my
personal voice combined with the base I found right at
the beginning of practicing my vocal art.
What do you consider to be the most important
element or feature throughout your work? For me, it
is the constant use of a non-existing language. What’s
your vision on this?
I agree with you. This is also a very important
element for me. It’s not my intention to tell you how
to understand my work. It gives impulses and I wish
for every listener to get his/her own interpretation of
it, but with an understanding of the thread behind the
work. There’s also a big difference in my voice: hard and
soft, high and low, how I play with these parameters
in one piece. I like to work with contrasts and with
the abstract. It should reflect our lives in an artificial
way.
The new album is called “Wolz”, a clear choice, and
after the first listen, I knew this is definitely a strong
selection of numbers and a good choice as an overview
for your work. You’ve edited existing tracks on the new
release, what was the main reason to do so?
Yeah, this album is just Wolz. I didn’t really edit existing
tracks. I used elements of old material. I searched
through a lot of old material and looked for the
essence of the ideas, the stories and techniques of all
that I have done. I started to take material from every
album I’ve produced and re-recorded it combined with
influences from today and new stuff. The whole idea
is that the work has elements of all the things I did
the last 25 years and where I am today. I did a lot of
research to do so: to find the right material which
I could link to Christian Wolz in 2013.
Are there any performances planned to celebrate the
occasion or to bring your fans together?
Yes. The project is called “ecencia” and will be
performed on the 19th of October, in Berlin at the
Uferstudios. That’s a very nice place with a view of
an empty swimming pool. The work itself consists
of two pieces: “pure” and a selection of my earlier
work: “works”. We will record the event for a live CD
I’m planning to release next winter. I’m planning to
release it next winter, as I told you earlier. Right now,
I’ve started a crowdfunding project, on startnext.de,
to raise money for this event.
A lot of success with it and thank you for the interview
Tom PLOVIE
photo © Andreas Paasch
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SURGYN
The Vampire Party 2013 was a blast
and although I tried to interview
the guys before the gig, it happened
afterwards, but I understand. Soon
we’ll be hit by their new album and
it will surely be a blast, since their
gigs are really great!
the Netherlands and, most recently, Belgium. Next
month, ‘Vanity’ will be re-released as a special limited
edition in North America and so we’re excited to see
where we’ll travel to next.
Where does your name come from?
Surgyn: The initial inspiration for the surgical theme
of the band was the character Dr. Steinman from the
computer game Bioshock. The name ‘Surgyn’ came
out to us after much brainstorming and after realising
that ‘Surgeon’ was already taken. Very old demos came
under various other names such as ‘Ravens Unkind’ and
‘Comacage’.
What is the philosophy behind the band? Why do you
use make up and look like mister death?
Surgyn: Our first album ‘Vanity’ explores the vain and
vacuous pursuit of beauty at any cost - even death.
Our slogans ‘Beauty is agony’ and ‘Fake what you lack’
represent the concept of the band’s first era. With the
second album, we are beginning to explore and expand
on different strains of this core concept. Image plays
a large role in our performances too and we continue
to explore this through the use of makeup, elaborate
outfits, theatrics and video.
Tell us about your success story, because it really went fast?
Surgyn: We were incredibly lucky to land an Angelspit
support slot for our first ever live show. The feedback
from this performance was incredible and we were
offered more shows in various cities around the UK. In
May 2011 we were signed to Death Watch Asia (DWA)
in Japan who re-released our (then self-released)
debut album ‘Vanity’. Since then we have had the honor
of touring with bands such as Aesthetic Perfection,
Combichrist and Modulate as well as supporting many
more of our favourite artists. Last year we started to
break out of the UK and have so far travelled to Sweden,
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You signed a Japanese record label: Deathwatch Asia. How
come, I mean it sounds pretty strange for a UK band, no?
Surgyn: Death Watch Asia contacted us after Leighton
(one of the Resistanz organisers) sent our self-released
album to Jamie at DWA who decided to sign us
immediately. It was a huge moment in our career and
has granted us a lot of opportunities ever since.
I’ve never heard of the expression “sharp as stars”;
what does it mean in this song?
Surgyn: ‘Sharp as stars’ is a line Sovereign came up with
when he wrote the lyrics for the song. We really liked
how it sounded and it seemed natural to choose that as
the title. The rest of the lyrics explain a bit more what
‘Sharp as stars’ really means.
I think you can tell us more about this one too:
‘Aesthetics (are a Moral Imperative)’?
Surgyn: ‘Aesthetics (are a moral imperative)’ is the
phrase that’s written on the floor in blood just before
entering Dr. Steinman’s area in the game Bioshock. It
helped form the basis of the primary concept of Surgyn.
Can you tell us something about your future plans?
Surgyn: We’re half way through writing the second
album and eagerly awaiting the release of our debut
album in North America. We have some big plans in
store.
Any famous last words? If you can think about a one
liner as header for this interview, what would it be?
Surgyn. You are a product. Sell yourself.
Filip VAN MUYLEM
photo © Marquis(pi)X
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CHELSEA
WOLFE
Chelsea Wolfe is not Gothic, she’s not into Witch-House
or anything. She is a singer-songwriter of great talent
who transcends the barriers of musical styles to create
dark, profound and very personal songs. If you really
want to describe her style, then it’s a sort of dronefolk-blues-goth-electronic crossover... We had the
opportunity to meet Chelsea for an interview after the
concert she gave in Antwerp.
Is your acoustic album, “Unknown Rooms” a sort of
bridge for you between the ‘old’ and the ‘new’ Chelsea
Wolfe, especially since you changed label’s?
I think so. My label had asked me if I wanted to do an
acoustic album because I had so many old acoustic
songs. People were asking me when I was going to
release songs like ‘Flatlands’, which I had done years ago
but hadn’t released yet. So, when the idea came up and
I started compiling these old recordings, I decided to do
some new ones as well. At the same time, I wanted to get
away from the imagery of my former label, Pendu.
On the next album, there will be several electronic
songs. Something to do with the ‘Wild Eyes’ project you
have with Ben (Note: Ben Chisholm, Chelsea’s partner
in crime)?
Yes, we’ve had that project for several years but it just
didn’t feel right to have it separated from the Chelsea
Wolfe project because it’s the same people, Ben and I.
The vibe is the same, there’s just a different sound and
we use different instruments, so we decided to combine
both styles in one project.
Would you say the new song “Kings,” which you play
live, is an example of the new style of Wild Eyes?
Yes, it’s one of the songs that come from it.
So the next album is planned for release in September/
October? I understand it will be more electronic, but
also with folk and rock elements?
Yes, with a wide range. It’s gonna be on Sargent House
as well.
You also play another new song, ‘Feral Love’, on stage.
Yes, this one has been there for a while as well but we
re-recorded it for the new album.
You also introduced a violin on the last album with the
very talented Andrea Calderon?
Yes, she played on the acoustic album and also on the
new album, so...
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What about this song, ‘Boyfriend’: I knew it was a cover
but I didn’t know that Ben (Chisholm) co-composed it.
Yes, it was composed by Karlos Rene Ayala, a friend from
my hometown, whom we both knew before we started
playing music together. I really loved this song when I
heard it and I didn’t realize that he had played on it, so
we ended up redoing that song on the acoustic album.
How was the tribute to Rudimentary Peni received?
Because it didn’t really get lot of coverage in the press.
I think some people were confused. I called it a tribute
album because it’s not just covers, I just took the lyrics.
But I haven’t heard anything negative about it, apart
from people being mad about the way the songs were
covered, but I like it a lot!
Are you still in touch with the guys from the band?
They heard the album and seemed to like it. C. Orr did
the artwork for it.
What happened in Aachen? You had to change the
venue a few days before the concert?
It’s because of a cover I did years ago and the guys at the
venue thought that we were a fascist group. So, we were
kicked out of the festival where we were supposed to
play, so we ended up playing at the Musikbunker, which
is ok. It was a nice show; I liked the place. It’s too bad that
people associate us with things like that. I don’t want
to be insensitive; I’m not from Germany so I understand
that feeling, with history, you know... But I don’t want to
be associated with fascism...
Let’s talk about your sources of inspiration and your
lyrics. Why this fascination for death, car accidents and
all these things?
A lot of my songs have to do with death because I’ve
never really had to deal with it. No one close to me has
ever died yet. And I think that singing and writing about
it is my way to try to understand it. I’m also interested in
materialities of the world, natural disasters, the way that
life is shaken up so quickly and unexpectedly. You think
about life as a routine and, one day, an earthquake or a
tsunami can change it all in a second. I find inspiration
for writing songs in those kinds of things...
Interview made possible thanks to the kind cooperation
of Weyrd Son and Ben Chisholm.
Philippe BLACKMARQUIS
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THE KLINIK - Eat Your Heart Out (CD)
(Out Of Line)
The hottest news you’ll hear in 2013 is not about Habemus Papam, no no, it’s the
fact that the Klinik are back with a new album. Cold, menacing, minimal ebm with
lots of industrial soundscapes and the hissing voice of Dirk Ivens. Is that a good
thing? Well, I like it when bands say the occasional fuck you to renewal, so for me
it’s a plus. The best song for me is “Stay” because of the unusual structure, which
sounds edgy and dangerous. Most songs are straightforward Klinik ebm, like “We
Are One”, a slow and menacing song with good lyrics. “Closing Time” is the last song,
again a good one with even a few dance influences! The Klinik is back, I didn’t think
that much of this new album at first, but after a while it does grow on you. [CK]
SPETSNAZ - For Generations To Come (CD)
(Dark Dimensions)
Spetsnaz has always been a project to follow. The first album “Grand Design” was
released in 2003 and made me sceptic: was this a Nitzer Ebb-clone like there
have been so many of? “Totalitär” (2006) confirmed the quality of the band. And
now, after 6 years, we finally get the new full album. The oldschool sound has not
changed a bit and is almost a certain success. “Freefall” and “True To Form” are
stompers for the stormtroopers, while tracks like “Onwards” or “Mine” even hark
back to the older Front 242-sound. “For generations to come” comes close to what
I feel should be the perfect EBM-album: hard, beating, no compromises, straight
forward with lyrics that kick butt. Spetsnaz is back! [PD]
VARIOUS ARTISTS - _ever Alive: A Tribute to Snowy Red (LP)
(Weyrd Son Records)
This album is an atomic bomb. And this is not just to make a joke referring to
« Euroshima »! Conceived as a tribute to Snowy Red, the legendary Belgian band
from the 80s led by Micky Mike, who died in 2009, it turns out to be an anthology
of the best minimal wave music from the 21st century! Indeed, Weyrd Son (the
son of Micky Mike), who is releasing this tribute album, chose young and fresh
bands for the covers: US bands like Led Er Est, Animal Bodies, Bestial Mouths,
Nové Můra, //TENSE//, Deathday or Revelator; European acts like Scorpion Violente,
Meddicine, or Mushy and, oddly enough, only one Belgian act: Safyée, Micky Mike’s
daughter. All 17 tracks clearly show how Snowy Red’s new-wave music, with its
minimal synths, repetitive vocals and industrial/hypnotic atmosphere, has inspired
the current minimal wave bands. A jewel of a record and a must-have for all lovers
of new-wave and minimal wave. [PB]
NITON DECAY - Cage (LP)
(Seja Records)
This can be described as synth-pop at its darkest. You’ve never heard of Niton Decay?
Well, it’s Stefan Gonser’s alter ego, who is a member of Traffic AM, postrockers also
on Seja Records. The first track Strange And Silent immediately grabbed me by the
neck as this tiny piece of music is like a Pieter Nooten-track that could have been
released on Cold Meat Industry. Don’t Mind is ambient-pop but it’s more than just
pop! Just listen to Deny The Decay as this gloomy pop song has all the qualities of
a Bowie-track from “Low”. Niton Decay won’t leave you happy as this music will put
you in a very dark mood in which melancholy rules, but oh my God….what a terrific
place it is! [DB]
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ORDO
ROSARIUS
EQUILIBRIO
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Lots of people have tried to describe Ordo Rosarius
Equilibrio and since you’re the perfect person to do so,
I’ll ask you.
I am perfect for a lot of things, I can think of several, but
not that. The less able you are to define ORE, the better.
And I can merely hope that you and others keep trying
despite my reluctance to provide you with clarity.
Since you got signed to Out Of Line a lot has happened
with the band. Because of this, people who’ve never
heard your music before are getting into it. Some
are saying you sold out, but I guess you make music
because you want it to be heard?
Out of Line is a great label with the financial capabilities
to support our ambitions without any questions asked.
Of course, it feels strange to become a much smaller
and stranger looking fish in a huge pond rather than
a big fish in a small bowl, but when it all comes down
In your lyrics you joke a lot with religion. Aren’t you
afraid that you’ll be punished for that and that you’ll
never see heaven?
Wouldn’t you agree that to maintain the belief that
blasphemy and religious mockery will result in spiritual
punishment, you need to believe in the existence of
god? I don’t. And like a wise man once said - “I’d rather
rule in Hell, than serve in Heaven”. Or like our beloved
son keeps saying - “We only have one life, so why can’t
everyone have a good life with one million kronor and
a nice car?”
to it, signing to OOL was a matter of survival for ORE.
Regardless of what people want to believe, being part
of the label formerly known as Cold Meat Industry, was
not a walk in the park, and our belonging to CMI was
long overdue even before the release of O N A N I back
in 2009. Songs 4 Hate & Devotion, however, was finished
long before OOL reached out and opened Pandora’s box,
so even if things hadn’t turned out the way they did, and
S4H&D had been released somewhere else, it would
have sounded exactly the same. But all this is too hard
for some people to grasp; the inevitable evolution that
comes with the passing of time, and it is consequently
easier to believe in assumptions and lies rather than
facts. And ultimately, signing to OOL was one of the best
decisions I have ever made. There were naturally other
alternatives, but I prefer the unorthodox in favor of the
obvious, and also the idea of moving forward rather than
sideways or even backward.
I’m sorry but everyone who gets interviewed by me
has to answer these questions. What’s your favourite
record of all time and please state why.
I think there are two - Alphaville’s “Forever Young”
alongside Christian Death’s “Only Theatre of Pain”. Why,
you ask? “Forever Young” because it’s a masterpiece of
ingeniously composed pop songs so entirely reflecting
the sound of the 80’s, but still outshining most
contemporary attempts to surpass its excellence. Every
single song is a hit in its own particular way. And “Only
Theatre of Pain” for all the very same reasons; it’s an
overwhelmingly good recording from beginning to
end. Every song is absolutely brilliant, both musically
as well as lyrically. Spiritual Cramp is amazing, but the
recording’s epitome is “Romeo’s Distress”. If one is to
own just one single gothic recording, it has to be “Only
Theatre of Pain” or Virgin Prune’s “If I die I die”.
I’m a long-time fan, and I think Songs 4 Hate And Devotion
is your best album, but in a way it is also the most poppy
one. Can I say that this is the new Ordo-direction?
Thank you very much. There are naturally others who
disagree with your opinion and get caught up in the
fact that we have evolved beyond the point where it all
started. Some say we have changed beyond recognition,
others that we sound exactly the same over and over. But
it’s all quite simple, thou cannot love them all. Change is
both inevitable as well as crucial, and when it all comes
down to it, how fun would it be to listen to “Reaping the
Fallen” over and over and over again? Not very fun, if you
ask me. There is no premeditated direction, never has
been, probably never will be. Whatever I accomplish is
the sole result of my psychological state of mind during
the process of creation, and the only thing that matters is
the intrinsic essence of ORE, nothing more. As far as the
essence is there, anything goes.
With whom wouldn’t you mind to be alone with in an
elevator for 8 hours and what would you do then?
I assume we are speaking about a nice clean elevator,
something hotel looking, with mirrors and clean
carpeting, and not one of those filthy ones that reeks
of urine, human excrement and decay? Cause if its
not clean, an stinks of urine vomit and desperation, I
really hope I am stuck there with someone with a gun,
otherwise I wouldn’t mind to be stuck for eight hours
together with Rose; and just imagine what we would
do….But if I envision the elevator situation just a little
more realistically I am pretty sure that after three hours
of carnal activities, she would start whining and being
all restless, so maybe we are better off if it was me
Rose and another couple, who brought cigarettes and a
camera. That could become quite interesting.
On the EP 4Play you were joined by Matt Howden.
How did he get in touch?
Matt’s involvement was the result of Matt and I really
meeting for the first time at a mutual friend’s wedding
in Bickenbasch Germany last August (Axel Menzer). Since
we stayed at the same hotel, down in the valley, far from
internet and civilized forms of communication, we were
forced to engage in real oral dialogue, and from there,
we ended up here. Matt contributed with strings for
three of the songs on “4Play”, and yet another 6 songs
on the upcoming CD. Whatever happens after this first
encounter is written in the stars, and I don’t even dare
to start speculating. But even if this is it, I am eternally
grateful for Matt’s involvement and the results he
accomplished.
A special message for the Peek-A-Boo readers could be?
Porn is the new black.
Didier BECU
photo © Marquis(pi)X
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FIELDS OF THE NEPHILIM, ICON OF COIL, LETZTE INSTANZ, OOMPH!, PETER HEPPNER, & many more 26-28.07 SUMMER DARKNESS @ Utrecht [NL] BAL DU MASQUE PRESENTS: IMAGINARIUM ; STEAMPUNK FANTASTIQUE ;
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